Should You Remove A Shared File and .DLL ?

Talk about losing a whole day of work!!  Don’t let this happen to you….

When you remove programs from your computer, using the Add/Remove Programs system, should you answer “Yes” or “No” to the question, “Do you want to remove a shared file?”

Hmmmm, careful now, read this carefully – or risk a catastrophe!

Shared files have the file extension “.DLL” on them. That means they’re a Dynamic Linked Library file. This means the file in question can be used by different programs. A word processor and another program may share a DLL file. So removing that file may cause another program to malfunction.

You may have seen a message stating that a certain file cannot be found. That file is needed in order to open the program you’re trying to use. Why is it missing? Could be that you removed it when you uninstalled another program.

The bottom line: If you aren’t familiar with a filename, and you’re asked if you want to delete it, don’t. Just answer “NO” to the question. It won’t do any harm if it’s not actually needed.

But watch out if it *is* needed – and you’ve removed it!

I had this happen when I un-installed a program to re-install it (due to it crashing constantly and the tech support people instructing me to just un-install and do a complete re-install).

Well… when I un-installed the program, it removed a critical .dll file that (of all things) Internet Explorer needed!

Guess what?  Spent 5 hours trying to get everything back to normal… all over a stupid little .dll file.

So… in short, if you’re removing or un-installing ANYTHING, say NO to removing the associated DLL files, or you could be “up the creek!”

Ed

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